Anthracite coal miners emerging from a mine, Scranton, PA, circa 1900.
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Miners are coming out of the elevator that takes them down into the shaft mine opening.

Credit: Dept. of Envir. Protection, Pa.

In the late 1800s, coal mining was one of the nation's most dangerous and deadly industrial occupations. To improve first the safety and then the lives of Pennsylvania coal miners, Thomas J. Foster wrote a magazine column on miner safety that would evolve into his International Correspondence Schools. In the fifty years after its founding, ICS would enroll more than four million workers.

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